Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Fab Four

When I owned by PS2, I purchases and very much enjoyed Guitar Hero. I wasn't too bad at it either. I was able to do most of the songs on medium difficulty, which was fine for me. But when I picked up my PS3, I dusted off my plastic guitar and software and traded it in for something at Gamestop.

Now, I was never really interested in Rock Band. Sure it sounded like a lot of fun, but the "Man Cave" as the guys at work call it, which is where I've got my computer, PS3 and Xbox 360 set up in is very very small. So, setting up a drum kit, no matter how condensed it maybe compared to a real one, would take up just about 1/2 the room.

Well, then Harmonix announced The Beatles, Rock Band.

After a little negotiating, like telling my wife she didn't have to buy me a birthday gift next month if she let me have this game now and cleaning up the Man Cave a little, I picked up my set of plastic instruments at Best Buy. Now, before you go thinking that I've got a small fortune, let me explain that I did not pick up the Limited Edition version, which is around $250.00. I ended up getting the less expensive version which didn't have the replicas of the Beatles instruments. It would be cool to play on Ringo's drums or Paul's bass, but since I'll be playing them in the privacy of my own home wearing boxer shorts, I didn't feel the need for going over board.

I got out the guitar, which was probably a safe thing to do, since I've never used a drum kit before in my life and would be embarassed to see how that went while sober. The set up was fairly easy and the packaging was really impressive. Instead of openning up the huge box and finding everything back in there, they actually had the drum kit and the guitar packed up separately. Which means I don't have to pull out pieces of the drum kit just to set up the guitar. I was also a little confused while opening up the box. I thought all the instruments were wired. I thought this, (I did no real research on the box set except to compare pricing), because on the box it says it comes with a 4 port usb hub. Since it was a PS3 version and most things associated with the PS3 communicate with the main unit via blue tooth technology, I figured it was all wired instruments.

Well, they aren't wired, they are wireless. the hub is so you can hook up the wireless box that goes with the associated instrument. This was a happy accident for me, because I wasn't looking forward to running cords all over the floor. Course when I ran the cord, it would only be about 4 feet, which is the distance from my Futon and my 32" LCD. Still, it was nice.

Ok, so I got the guitar set up, which was pretty easy and then inserted the Beatles Rock Band disc and proceeded to see just how rusty I was. I was really really really rusty. So, after calibrating the wireless plastic guitar, I decided to jump into the story mode and see how bad I was after being out of practice a few years. Well, I would have to say it was on the on the verge really sucking. I think I got 20% of the notes right. So thinking it was the game, I recalibrated the plastic guitar again. I mean, I couldn't' suck that bad, right?

This time instead of jumping back into the story mode, I chose a song from the easy list and started giving it a try. Well, more suckage, but I was up from 20 to about 40%. Now, when I say I know I was sucking, I would hit almost 100% on easy when playing Guitar Hero, so I understand the concept of hitting the buttons when they come across the target area. At this point, I decided to do the tutorial. Which, to be honest, helped me tons. I was able to get back in the rhythm of the game after a little practice.

Well, to make a longer story longer, I went back in and picked another easy song and scored almost 90% with a 74 note string, meaning I hit 74 notes in a row accurately. After a few more songs, even a few on the more difficult range, I still managed to keep my score from hitting the crapper. So, if your rusty and haven't played a plastic instrument in a few years, I suggest you put your ego in check and play through the tutorial.

But, overall I would have to say I made the right decision to pick this monster up. It is the most fun I've had playing a game, except the one with Scott, Aaron and the other Scott a month back. I love the Beatles. I have been a fan of The Beatles since way back in High School. It wasn't until cd's became inexpensive and widely available back in the early 90's that I began filling out my collection. I'm not a Beatles maniac, but I do appreciate their music. I especially appreciate how, in a time when people were just scratching the surface of rock and roll and specifically, what could be done with electric instruments and sounds to enhance a song, the Beatles were right there on the front lines with George Martin, making it happen for us.

If you have Rock Band, I would suggest picking this up, the music has been remastered in true stereo and the animation is just great. If your not a fan of plastic instrument games, then, I would suggest one of the 12 remastered compact discs recently released. Each of them have been remastered in true stereo and digitally enhanced. Course, as a co worker said to me recently when I asked if he listens to The Beatles, his response was, "I don't listen to anything, with a few excepts, that was released before I was born". That was 24 years ago. What a shame.

The Play List
(Might not be complete!)

I Want To Hold Your Hand
I Feel Fine
Day Tripper
Paperback Writer
Don't Let Me Down

Please Please Me (1963)
I Saw Her Standing There
Do You Want To Know A Secret
Twist and Shout

With the Beatles (1963)
I Wanna Be Your Man

A Hard Day's Night (1964)
A Hard Day's Night
Can't Buy Me Love

Beatles For Sale (1964)
Eight Days a Week

Help! (1965)
Ticket To Ride

Rubber Soul (1965)
Drive My Car
I'm Looking Through You
If I Needed Someone

Revolver (1966)
Yellow Submarine
And Your Bird Can Sing

Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967)
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band/With a Little Help From My Friends
Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds
Getting Better
Good Morning Good Morning

Magical Mystery Tour (1967)
I Am The Walrus
Hello Goodbye

The Beatles (White Album) (1968)
Dear Prudence
Back In the U.S.S.R.
While My Guitar Gently Weeps
Helter Skelter

Yellow Submarine (1969)
Hey Bulldog

Abbey Road (1969)
Come Together
Octopus's Garden
I Want You (She's So Heavy)
Here Comes the Sun

Let It Be (1970)
Dig a Pony
I Me Mine
I Got a Feeling
Get Back

Love (2006)
Within You Without You/ Tomorrow Never Knows

A large portion of the songs need to be unlocked in story mode.


  1. PEE ESS THREE?????


    I've been sorta-kinda hoping some of my XBL friends would get this, since I doubt I'd play much by myself to justify spending all that cash.

    On the other hand, maybe I should thank you for not letting me spend all that cash?

  2. It was a hard decision my friend, chosing the game for the PS3 over the Xbox 360, but in the end it came down to storage. I've got a lot of room on my PS3 for downloadable content. Also, you can rip the original Rock Band and Rock Band 2 content onto your hard drive, for a small fee, which means, I can rent them both or borrow them and just pay a small fee to play the songs.

    With my Xbox already pushing close to its 20g limit and my PS3 sitting pretty with almost 80g, it was all about the storage in the end.

    Course, I could always get GH5 for the Xbox. lol

  3. Oh I thought you said you had an Elite? Guess not. I've got 50GB free on my 120GB HDD that I bought last year. Gawd I love that thing. Wish I could copy audio/video to it but at least I can stream from Zune and TVersity.

  4. I never thought I would need more than 20g for a console system. But with all the DLC and cool XBLA games available, it gets harder every day to free up space on that thing.

    I'll probably end up getting another drive eventually, but... I couldn't throw that money down, while throwing down money for a bunch of plastic instruments. My wife wasn't easy to convince and telling her I needed to spend an extra 120.00 for a drive, well, you get the picture. lol